Time to first byte (TTFB) indicates the responsiveness of a web server that measures the duration from the user’s request to the first byte of the page that the client’s browser receives.
What does “Reduce the initial server response times” mean?
This means that you have one or more pages with a TTFB greater than 600ms. This speed reduces your site’s performance (WordPress, Joomla, or another), leading to lower average time on page.
You should know that Google recommends a TTFB under 200 ms. Therefore, keep in mind this number when you check your site.
You can find out more about TTFB and stack-specific guidance (Drupal, Magento, React, and WordPress): https://web.dev/time-to-first-byte/
What triggers this issue?
You want your site to be good & fast at all times. So, you need to be aware of the possible reasons for a slow TTFB:
- Server configuration and performance
- DNS response time
- Dynamic content
- Network latency
- High web traffic
How to check the issue?
You can measure a TTFB with one of the tools (GTmetrix, Pingdom). They scan your site, and you get a metric of a TTFB for each page. You can divide all pages into three parts by speed:
- >600ms. First of all, you need to pay attention to this part of your site. The loading speed of these pages can be frustrating for users
- 200-600ms. It’s not a critical indicator. But you will also need to fix pages like this
- <200ms. You do not have to touch this part of the site. It would be best if you strived for your platform to consist of such fast pages
Why is this important?
When your pages have a small TTFB (<200ms):
- Users spend less time waiting for your site to start loading
- Users have a higher engagement and retention
How to fix the issue?
We have selected for you different options for how you can shorten the TTFB for your site:
- Use a fast web host (Cloudflare, cPanel)
- Use caching (WP Rocket)
- Keep plugins and themes updated
- Optimize your database (Htaccess)
- Use a CDN
- Reduce the number of queries your site runs to get information from the database (Query Monitor, New Relic)
- Do not forget the latest version of PHP
We hope that these tips will help resolve your issue and your site will work the way you want.
Here are some of the many ways to increase your page speed: